Cartoonist-essayist Cathy Guisewite.

Fans of award-winning cartoonist Cathy Guisewite—creator of the long-running comic strip Cathy—will have a chance to meet the woman herself when she comes to Sarasota to sign copies of her new book, Fifty Things That Aren’t My Fault, April 8 at Bookstore1Sarasota.

Guisewite, whose Cathy strip debuted in 1976 and appeared in over 1,400 newspapers around the world for 34 years, is paying a return visit to Sarasota; she’s been here often on a private basis over the years, as her parents, Anne and Bill, made their home here for decades. In fact, her parents turn up frequently in the new book, a debut collection of autobiographical essays that relate to the challenges of what Guisewite calls “the panini generation”—those squeezed between caring for aging parents and growing children, while trying not to lose themselves in the process.

Guisewite's new book features personal essays on a wide range of topics.

Of course, there are also some original spot art pieces drawn by Guisewite sprinkled throughout the book, as she ranges from topics like sending her daughter off to college, teaching her parents to use TiVo and helping them to downsize their lives, etc., while also occasionally touching on familiar Cathy anecdotes about shopping (and trying on those bathing suits in unforgiving store dressing rooms), unhealthy snacking, problems with relationships and the promises (and perils) of feminism.

A review of the new book in Time says, “Often hilarious and true, [Fifty Things That Aren’t My Fault] gets at that tension between the empowerment propaganda women are raised on and the gendered I-am-responsible-for-everyone’s-well-being reality in which most of us still live.”

The Bookstore1 event starts at 5 p.m. April 8 and tickets ($32, including a copy of the book) are required. For more info, call 365-7900 or visit sarasotabooks.com.

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